Monday, March 11, 2013

From"The Maxims and Reflections of Goethe".

It is no wonder that we all more or less delight in the mediocre, because it leaves us in peace: it gives us the comfortable feeling of intercourse with what is like ourselves.

Our passions are, in truth, like the phoenix. When the old one burns away, the new one rises out of its ashes at once.

At all times it has not been the age, but individuals alone, who have worked for knowledge. It was the age which put Socrates to death by poison, the age which burnt Huss. The ages have always remained alike.

To live in a great idea means to treat the impossible as though it were possible. It is just the same with a strong character; and when an idea and a character meet, things arise which fill the world with wonder for thousands of years.

Piety is not an end but a means to attain ... the highest degree of culture. This is why ... those who parade piety as a purpose and an aim mostly turn into hypocrites.
JOHANN WOLFGANG VON GOETHE,The Maxims and Reflections of Goethe.

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